Fashion Icon Hunting Black-Type At Trentham

Fashion Icon will be looking to turn the tables on Sudbina when the pair meet in the Gr.3 New Zealand Bloodstock Desert Gold Stakes (1600m) at Trentham on Saturday.

Sudbina just got the better of Fashion Icon in the closing stages of their 1400m contest at Hastings earlier this month to win by a half-length, and the TAB market for the fillies feature on Saturday reflects that result, with Sudbina a $3.30 favourite ahead of Grail Seeker at $3.60, with Fashion Icon on the third line of betting at $6.50.

Trainer Peter Didham was pleased with Fashion Icon’s run and believes it could have been a different result on a firmer surface.

“It was a good run, but we did all of the donkey work,” he said. “Like Michael (McNab, jockey) said, if the track had been a little better, she would have sprinted away a bit quicker, Sudbina came out in the better part of going and got us late.”

The daughter of U S Navy Flag will be tested at stakes level, and over a mile, for the first time this weekend, and Didham is confident of a bold showing despite it being her seventh start this preparation.

“She will stretch out to a mile and it’s her seventh start, which isn’t a worry, it’s exciting to have her in there and she will let me know when she has had enough,” he said.

“She has worked well, she has done well in every start, and has never let us down. She is a really exciting filly, she just tries so hard.

“She deserves her place on Saturday and have a go at some black-type. We are lucky to lease a nice filly off Kylie Bax, so it would be good to get them some black-type.”

Didham will wait and see the outcome of Saturday’s race before making any future plans but highlighted the Gr.2 Wellington Guineas (1400m) at Trentham in March as a potential target.

“We just don’t know her level yet,” he said. “There are a few options, including the Wellington Guineas, but she has been up a while and deserves a break shortly.

“I think next year we are going to have a really exciting mare. This is only her first prep with all of these races. She is not over-raced, her races have been well-spaced, but she just tries hard and is an experienced racehorse.”

Fashion Icon will be ridden by Australian-based jockey Daniel Stackhouse, and Didham is excited to have secured the talented hoop for five of his six runners on Saturday.

“It is always good to get good jockeys on,” he said. “We are fortunate to get him on, especially when McNab and Opie (Bosson) are out this week. I have got him for five, so I am pretty lucky. His manager rang up and said he was coming over so I grabbed him for as many as I could.”

-Joshua Smith, LOVERACING.NZ Newsdesk


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